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Handmade in England

Crafting shoes for over 500 years.

The heart of Arthur Sleep.
Revived in 2012 – London.

BUILDING CHARACTER

Sports cars. Castles. Queues. Afternoon tea. Tailored suits. Raincoats. Rain. Gin and Tonics. Bad innuendo. Monarchy. Spotted Dick. Chivalry. Handmade shoes.
There are some things that Britain just does best.
And because ‘handmade shoes’ is on the Official List (see above), for us, there was never any question as to where we wanted to make our shoes. Arthur Sleep’s factory is situated in charming Northampton, the world’s leading supplier of truly excellent handmade shoes for over 500 years.

 

A WALK-THROUGH

Each and every pair of Arthur Sleep shoes is handcrafted in a factory steeped in this indelibly rich heritage.

We rely on a small team of extremely skilled and experienced cordwainers, who employ the same methods that have been used for generations.

Our designs incorporate both traditional architecture and modern, innovative fashion. We even employ the very latest nano-technology coating to offer protection to our shoes.

No detail is too small. Every pattern, every welt, every eyelet and lace is created, cut, stitched, molded and tied with the highest level of personal attention and care.

For this reason, no two pairs of our shoes are ever exactly identical; rather, they absorb and carry with them, in some small way, the unique aesthetics, sensibility, and mood of the cordwainer at the time that he crafted them. In this way, Arthur Sleep’s shoes become more than just another pair of beautiful slippers or brogues (although, they will be beautiful!) – they allow you to experience the humility, intimacy, and quality that are at the core of British craftsmanship.

 

We have loved making these shoes for you.

We hope you love wearing them.

The Process.

1

Design Office

Everything starts here, at the drawing board in London.

2

Pattern Cutting

A master pattern of each section is created for the leather and other materials. These are then graded to produce a series of patterns for each size and fitting of the shoe.

3

Clicking Room

Using a sharp skiving knife, the ‘clickers’ cut out the uppers.

4

Closing Room

In the closing room the uppers are received from the clickers. The following are just a few of the jobs which the closers do : opening, marking, lining, printing, size-stamping and fancy stitching. After the uppers have been through these operations, they are ready to be stitched.

5

Press & Preparation

Here the sole, insole and heel are prepared, including reducing the soles to their exact shape and attaching the heels.

6

Making Room

Attaching the soles to the uppers. This involves pulling the upper tightly over a last and tacking it securely to the insole before finally attaching the soles.

 

7

Finishing Room

This is where all final preparations are made. The soles are edged and polished. The uppers are brushed and finished.

 

8

Shoe Room

Socks are placed inside the shoes. They are then cleaned and placed within their individual dust bags before being boxed. The shoes are now fully crafted and ready for dispatch to their proud owners around the world.

 

“Long before we met Arthur Sleep, we knew him by reputation. An habitué of only the most stylish London circles, Mr. Sleep quickly gained notoriety for his dramatic entrances to all notable social events.”

The Narrator
An Introduction to Arthur Sleep

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